Professor René Haak, Head of Division 723, Global Change and Germany Board Member during his recent visit to South Africa, Namibia and Zambia met staff and students and delivered a talk at the University of Zambia (UNZA). Most of the participants are beneficiaries from BMBF funds through SASSCAL 1 Research phase. During the visit, Prof Haak was accompanied by Mr Gabin Ananou from the DLR Project Management Agency (PT-DLR), SASSCAL Executive Director – Dr Jane Olwoch and SASSCAL Director of Science and Technology – Dr Jörg Helmschrot.
In his talk Prof. Haak highlighted the achievements of the Two research centres of excellence in Africa: SASSCAL and WASCAL. Prof Haak also noted that despite useful research results recorded, the challenge has been to deliver and translate these into products or services that can impact communities. Therefore, an agenda process has been established to reform the research and capacity building programme that will involve active scientific and stakeholder engagement, continuous guidance by the Scientific Committee and the recently announced SASSCAL II research grants.
The Zambia tour was concluded by a site visit to one of the 19 the Automatic Weather Stations (AWS) in Zambia. The delegation visited and inspected one AWS within UNZA. Prof Haak echoed the commitment of BMBF to continue providing support with dedicated amounts € 10 million for the new science plan and € 3 Million for Capacity Development.